Conserving & Flourishing

Conserving & Flourishing

Inspired by vibrant growth from this winter's rain, my newest collection, Flourishing, is a celebration of the spring to come. This collection embodies nature's cycles – rebirth after hardship – which reflect the cycles within our own lives.

As I'm writing this, the water is pouring from the sky and washing over the land. My garden loves it! This is the kind of weather that really nurtures the lush bloom of spring just around the bend. I can't wait to find fresh inspiration for my creative flow in nature this year.

This winter has been one of the wettest we've seen here in California in quite a while. You might have heard that we've been in a serious drought for the last decade plus. California is the leading US state in agricultural production and has a huge diversity of wilderness areas. Without water, all the plants and animals that live here suffer, which we've been seeing in both populations and production decline.

Some fun facts about California:
▪ There are 77,500 farms totaling 25.5 million acres that produce over 400 types of commodities.
▪ More than 65% of the nations fruits and nuts come from California..
▪ About 25% of the food produced here is exported to other countries.
▪ There are 149 wilderness areas covering about 15 million acres, which is about 15% of the state.
▪ California is home to 770 wildlife species (est. total population is between 250,000-750,000)
▪ Out of the 6,300 foliage species here, about 2,100 are not found anywhere else in the world.

Hopefully this gives a little perspective on both the beauty of this region and how devastating a drought can be to all those who live here or rely on food from here. The biggest contributing issue: global climate change. And, it's not just the western USA! Climate change affects the entire planet and many other beautiful places have also been suffering from abnormal weather patterns.

People have been asking if the big storms we've had here this winter are enough to pull us out of the drought. Sadly, experts say that while it helps, we need another 2-4 consecutive winters of this rain quantity, raising the water table (level of ground water) to remove the danger. Fingers crossed!

Let's talk choices and conservation...
For those of us living in drought-afflicted zones, we can do our part to reduce water usage and make choices that support less water waste. Here are a few tips:

1. Keep up on home maintenance
If you’re a homeowner, take some time to check out your plumbing. Repair any leaky pipes, dripping faucets, worn hoses, running toilets, damaged sprinklers, etc.

2. Make a few changes to daily habits
Turn the water off while brushing teeth. Shave a minute or two off showers. Run dish and laundry washers with full loads. These simple changes can save more water than we realize.

3. Wild & native – go all natural in the yard
This is one of my favorite tips! Skip the Kentucky bluegrass (popular in lawns) and opt for native terrain. Foliage local to your area will be more adapted to survival, even with less water.

4. Choose products manufactured with lower water waste
In addition to food production, industries known for high water waste include textile manufacturing, building construction, and automotive manufacturing. If possible, look for brands with a conservationist focus.

Sustainability is important here at VANDA inspired. Although silversmithing does require the use of some water, I do my best to stay mindful of minimizing waste. I employ various methods to reduce water waste including the use of smart plugs to automatically turn off water-using equipment and re-using water several times, especially for tumbling and cleaning.

When it comes to water, conservation is the key to helping our planet flourish.

We are responsible for creating change and there is always hope.

Wanda @ VANDA inspired



Photo courtesy of Dan Carlson and

The Orange County Register

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California State Parks Foundation,nowhere%20else%20in%20the%20world

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